Our Mission

The Essential Theatre is a non profit professional theatre dedicated, but not limited to producing theatre reflective of the African American experience that explores and celebrates America’s rich, diverse cultural landscape. Paramount to the company’s mission is the implementation of programs for youth in Washington, DC’s metropolitan area that promotes interdisciplinary education and positive self-esteem.

Institutional Objectives

  • To create new theatre audiences.
  • To find, encourage and train new talent.
  • To produce theatre entertainment with unique appeal.
  • To provide all people in our community an outlet for creative expression.
A man and woman standing next to each other.
Actors Kailah S. King and Russell Jordan in the 2020 two time Helen Hayes Awards® nominated “Vivian’s Music 1969,” by Monica Bauer, PhD, Directed by Glory Kadigan, Photo by Al Foote, III

It's Essential!

Theatre Students from James Madison University’s College of Visual and Performing Arts in the School of Theatre at Kennedy Center as part of The Essential Theatre’s presentation of “Into the Sun,” by Mike Gubser, Ph.D. and Paolo Prandoni Directed by Kate Arecchi, MFA, Musical Direction Greg Paladino.

A man sitting at the piano with his hands raised.
Actor Joseph W. Lane as George Parker in “The CARER,” by Alan HopGood. Directed by Lileana Blain-Cruz, MFA | Photo by Sylvia Hanjoo Lee © 2007